Monday, December 5, 2016

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Softball won at least a share of its sixth Mountain West championship. Softball won at least a share of its sixth Mountain West championship.

Champions Again

SDSU softball won at least a share of its sixth Mountain West championship, the 10th SDSU MW championship this year.

The San Diego State softball team clinched at least a share of the Mountain West title with a 5-1 win over UNLV Thursday night at SDSU Softball Stadium. The Aztecs improved to 33-18 overall and 11-5 in league play. This is SDSU's 10th Mountain West title this academic year.

Fresno State (11-7, conference play completed) and Colorado State (9-7) can share the Mountain West championship with SDSU, but San Diego State owns all the tiebreakers and earns the league's automatic bid into the NCAA tournament. The Aztecs can clinch the MW title outright with a win vs. the Rebels (21-29, 7-9 MW) on either Friday (5 p.m. PT) or Saturday (1 p.m. PT).

SDSU has now won the Mountain West six times (2002-03, 2006, 2008, 2012-13) and has advanced to nine NCAA tournaments, including six consecutive appearances.

Junior Lorena Bauer (San Diego/Steele Canyon HS) led the San Diego State offense by going 2-for-2 with a home run, double and three RBIs. Senior Kristin May (Corona, Calif.) added a two-run single and junior Patrice Jackson (Kansas City, Mo.) singled and scored a pair of runs.

Senior right-hander Rebecca Arbino (Clovis, Calif.) picked up the win for the Aztecs as she held UNLV hitless for 4 2/3 innings. She ended up allowing one run on four hits and walk, while striking out 11 batters, and is now 19-12 on the season.

SDSU broke open a scoreless tie with three runs in the bottom of the fourth inning. Senior Tiffany Corder (San Clemente, Calif.) led off with a walk and moved to second when Rebel shortstop Tayler Aleman was unable to field Jackson's hard-hit ball. Bauer then doubled down the left field line to score Corder and move Jackson to third. After junior Dominique Dinner (Monterey, Calif.) replaced Bauer at second and senior Kamerin May (Corona, Calif.) lined out to UNLV third baseman Jamie Depippo, Kristin May singled up the middle to plate Jackson and Dinner with insurance runs.

After getting their first hit in the fifth, the Rebels finally broke through with a run in the sixth when Aleman's single scored Samantha Juarez.

San Diego State responded in the sixth when Bauer ripped a two-run homer just inside the left-field foul pole that scored Jackson, who had singled and moved to second on a wild pitch. It was Bauer's 12th home run of the season and 40th of her career.

The conference championship was the Aztec athletic department's 10th of the 2012-13 year (also women's soccer (regular season and tournament), football, volleyball, swimming & diving, women's basketball (regular season), indoor track & field, men's tennis (regular season) and women's tennis (regular season)). Softball will also be the ninth SDSU team to advance to an NCAA tournament.

San Diego State will look to clinch the outright MW championship at 5 p.m. PT tomorrow against UNLV in a game that be broadcast live on CBS Sports Network.